GOOD ENOUGH PARENTING

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  Do Not Show Favouritism Among Children  
 
 

Genesis 25:19-34
19 This is the account of Abraham's son Isaac. Abraham became the father of Isaac,
20 and Isaac was forty years old when he married Rebekah daughter of Bethuel the Aramean from Paddan Aram and sister of Laban the Aramean.
21 Isaac prayed to the LORD on behalf of his wife, because she was barren. The LORD answered his prayer, and his wife Rebekah became pregnant.
22 The babies jostled each other within her, and she said, "Why is this happening to me?" So she went to inquire of the LORD.
23 The LORD said to her, "Two nations are in your womb, and two peoples from within you will be separated; one people will be stronger than the other, and the older will serve the younger."
24 When the time came for her to give birth, there were twin boys in her womb.
25 The first to come out was red, and his whole body was like a hairy garment; so they named him Esau.
26 After this, his brother came out, with his hand grasping Esau's heel; so he was named Jacob. Isaac was sixty years old when Rebekah gave birth to them.
27 The boys grew up, and Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the open country, while Jacob was a quiet man, staying among the tents.
28 Isaac, who had a taste for wild game, loved Esau, but Rebekah loved Jacob.
29 Once when Jacob was cooking some stew, Esau came in from the open country, famished.
30 He said to Jacob, "Quick, let me have some of that red stew! I'm famished!" (That is why he was also called Edom.)
31 Jacob replied, "First sell me your birthright."
32 "Look, I am about to die," Esau said. "What good is the birthright to me?"
33 But Jacob said, "Swear to me first." So he swore an oath to him, selling his birthright to Jacob.
34 Then Jacob gave Esau some bread and some lentil stew. He ate and drank, and then got up and left. So Esau despised his birthright.


Favouritism blocks effective communication at the heart level. It prevents people from being vulnerable with each other about their feelings when they feel they are disliked, or that they have fallen out of favour.

For this patriarch's family, much was lost in the early years. They lost out on what might have been fantastic times together. They could have had so many great memories together as a family.

Each of the son could have turned out much more well-rounded if they had tapped into the strengths of both of their parents.

In the end, favouritism blocked each parent, Issac and Rebekah, from meeting the core emotional need for connection and acceptance in Jacob and Esau, respectively. At most, they got it from one parent only.

Favouritism breeds jealousy and results in tiffs with our siblings, which in turn, creates scars and gets carried into our adulthood.

Today's Practical

Talk between the couples to bring out any perception of favouritism from any of you to any of the kids. If such perception exists today clarify it to each kid separately and put it to rest.